***Editor's note: VSB has partnered with Twitter book club #NRBR to regularly feature new authors. Hitting lead-off will be VSB Senior Writer Samantha Irby, whose collection of essays — Meaty — will be discussed by the club tonight at 9pm. If you want to join the discussion, look for the hashtag #NRBR.***
I AM NOT GOOD IN BED. You know how I know? Because no one has ever thrown me a goddamned ticker tape parade immediately after peeling his slimy penis from where it dried against his leg after we fell asleep on either side of the wet spot. And I’m fine with that.
The other day I heard some stranger on the bus bragging about her prowess as a lover during our morning commute and my chest tightened and my stomach almost fell out of my butt. Was I having a heart attack? Probably. Was this the craziest shit I’d ever heard at seven in the morning? Definitely. At 34 years old I wasn’t aware that this was even a thing a person needed to be, I think reading lots of books and paying for my own cab should be enough to render me companionable at the very least. What, is everyone else at home on a Tuesday night deep conditioning her hair while thumbing through the Kama Sutra to memorize impressive new positions? Are they watching porn with a pencil and paper, taking careful notes on how to improve technique?! Am I the only person on Earth whose idea of pillow talk is, “Hurry up and pull out, bro. Game of Thrones is on in, like, ten minutes?”
My sexual arsenal has approximately three and a half tricks in it and I am totally not ashamed of that. I’ve only had sex with 5,239,874 people; WHAT THE FUCK AM I SUPPOSED TO DO BETWEEN THEM, PRACTICE!? Read books about the shit? It’s not like I can sign up for a workshop at the learning annex, and how many different (and practical) kinds of sex can you even have with a regular human!?
Here’s what I’m okay at:
1 Not throwing up. And I’m not talking about sucking a d, I mean when a dude is all up in my chitlins 45 minutes after a dinner he made me pay half for, as much as all that jostling around makes me want to vomit that Chili’s appetizer combo platter right onto his dirty sheets.
1a Kicking the cat off the bed. Sometimes it doesn’t work, though, and she will sit on the pillow watching judgmentally and critiquing my performance and that is really the most stressful shit ever.
2 Dirty talk. “Yeah, daddy. I like that. Put it in my ass. Now pull it out. Mmm, look at those miniscule flecks of human waste on your hard dick. Lick my asshole and catch E.coli, tiger. YOU ARE SO SEXY WITH MY PERIOD CLOTS ALL IN YOUR MUSTACHE.”
3 Providing post-coital snacks. Grocery shopping is hard and expensive, which is why I don’t do it. I walk into Whole Foods, full of purpose and surging with pride at all of the healthy choices I’m about to make, then I spend half an hour eating cornichons at the olive bar before feeling like an asshole and shame-purchasing $80 dollars’ worth of chocolates and fancy almonds. Which I will share with you after chafing your dickmeat with a lackluster handjob.
Whenever a man is really good at sex I can’t help but lie underneath him imagining all of the gonorrhea I’m he’s injecting me with with every perfectly executed g-spot thrust. Because how did he get so good if he didn’t practice on every woman who didn’t care about decent credit and/or a high school diploma. But despite my general aversion to change and personal growth, I decided to do some online research to improve my prowess as a lover (and, ostensibly, help the rest of you in the process) if I can ever convince anyone to have sex with me ever again. Yes, I could just watch porn while taking exhaustive notes, but then I would just masturbate and fall asleep with the lights on clutching the night cheese I brought into bed and who the fuck would that help.
How to Be Good in Bed, by The Internet.
1 Men love massages. Soothe his sore neck, arms, back, and legs with the sweet touch of your hands. How come no one ever talks about how hard a massage is on the giver? I have carpal tunnel, my dude, I can’t be spending an hour trying to rub the knots out of those “I played basketball in high school” calves. I MIGHT DISLOCATE MY GODDAMNED THUMBS.
2 Leave something behind. When getting out of bed, drop a sexy article of clothing under the covers for him to find when you're gone. I like to playfully tuck my overdue cable bill between the sheets of my one night stands as I tiptoe barefoot from the bedroom and his peacefully sleeping frame, or leave a to-do list taped on his fridge like, “drop off these prescriptions then grab me some lightbulbs at the Home Depot.”
3 Wear his clothes. One of my old boyfriends was a Sports Guy (not to be confused with a Playing Sports Guy, more like a Drunk Yelling At The Game While Embarrassing Me At Buffalo Wild Wings Sports Guy) and one night I took a hot shower and shaved my legs (it was his birthday) and got all sexed up (read: left my mouth guard on the side of the sink) and decided to surprise him in bed wearing one of his beloved football jerseys. I knew I’d made a mistake as soon as I pulled my left arm sexily through its designated hole and felt that upper back tightness that signifies the Nutri System might not be working as fast as I’d hoped. I shuffled out of the bathroom with my arms pinned to my sides, breasts pressed flat beneath the unforgiving material and banging uncomfortably against my ankles. He had to cut me out of that shit so we could bang, OH MY GOD.
So I guess what I’m saying is you should try to fuck dudes bigger than you.
4 Mix it up with music. Stop listening to your same old romantic radio station and invest in some timeless mood-enhancers. HAVE YOU EVER MADE LOVE TO THE SOUNDS OF A WARM MIST HUMIDIFIER ON HIGH, THO. SEXIER THAN YOU’D THINK.
5 Soften your skin. Give him a silky reason to keep his hands all over you. This list is obviously for white people. I haven’t been ashy since 1982. I literally moisturize using that congealed grease in the old Crisco can on top of your mother’s stove. Here’s hoping he likes chicken.
God, this is a lot of work. Fuck sex, I’m just going to get another cat.
Samantha Irby writes a blog called bitches gotta eat and recently published a book of essays called 'meaty.'